Posts Tagged ‘self-promotion’

Cutting the Fat.

I’m not a huge fan of New Year’s Resolutions. For the most part, I tend to throw them out within a week or two. So the fact that I joined a gym last week has nothing to do with the new year. It does however, have everything to do with the World Horror Convention coming up at the end of March. I have agreed to do a reading and will, hopefully, get the chance to sign some books. There may be people who want to take my picture on the off-chance that I may become famous someday. I know writers aren’t like movie stars. We aren’t expected to be sexy, but damn it, I have pride. I want to look good for this. It’s the first vacation, working or otherwise, that Lou and I have ever taken in over 5 years together. Call me vain. I want to look nice. I quit smoking last year, and it’s starting to catch up to me in a big way.

So I’m eating right (Think-starving to death) and exercising (You know those gerbils in the wheel that we think are so cute? Like that. But less cute and more jiggly). I’ve dug out my microdermabrasion kit (Sandpaper. My face. Yeah.) and I even bought some bleaching toothpaste (Not going to bitch about this. At least I’m not a porn star. You do not want to KNOW what they have to bleach.).  :/

I’m cutting the fat, getting rid of the excesses in my life. I also got word that in 6 weeks or less, Ad Nauseam will officially be released. This got me to thinking about all of the other awesome writers I have met through forums and social networking. I love these people. Most are very personable and I enjoy their responses to my posts and their own thoughts that they launch out into the cybersphere. But there is one thing that being friends with other writers tends to pile upon you. SPAM. No, I don’t mean everyone’s favorite ham flavored treat (Does anyone really eat that shit?), but bookish spam, otherwise known as the Buy My Book Syndrome. There’s nothing wrong with advertising your work. A certain amount of self-promotion is not only smart, but a necessary part of making it in this business. I’m not talking about that. Not at all. I DO THAT.

What I am talking about is the handful of authors, mostly of the indie variety, who think it’s okay to smother my feed and every group I belong to, with their advertisement. I’m not talking about the occasional plug. Oh hell no! Some of these people think it’s okay to plug multiple times a day, on their timeline and every group that they belong to. The end result? Since a good deal of us belong to the same groups, I get splattered by upwards of 12 of the same spammy message at a time. Did I mention this happens multiple times a day?

Since I can’t do anything about what they do in the groups, my only option is to quit those groups and I won’t be shoved out by someone who doesn’t respect others. But I can do something with my timeline. And I lied to you. I DO have a New Year’s Resolution. This year I am cutting the fat. Those of you that flood the networks with nothing more than self-serving ads for your own work, will be hidden from my feeds if not completely dropped. I WILL NOT BUY YOUR BOOK IF YOU DO THIS. This goes double for those who do nothing but spout politics. I also promise not to mention the books I have for sale unless there is pertinent information on them, such as a release or price decrease, more than once every week or two.

No one understands the necessity of self-promotion more than I, but let’s treat this with a modicum of professionalism and restraint. There are better ways to get your name out there than by becoming “that prick that won’t shut up about his stupid book.”

THE END. is only the beginning! Part 2

Hello Friends! Last week I talked a bit about what it takes to get my stories ready for the upcoming anthology. When finished, it should include around twelve to fifteen. To date we have five, with only one, Sister Alice’s Suitor, completely edited and ready for print. I have multiple works in process, and every thing to be edited and revised for print. All this must be done by August. I’m starting to feel like I may have sold my soul to the devil, or at least my Summer! Okay, enough whining you! So let’s leap ahead and pretend all this work is done. I wish! You might think it would now be time to kick back, put my feet up, and smile as the bucks start pouring in. 🙂 Wrong again. One of the biggest parts of being an author any more is self-promotion. It is also one of the hardest. As authors, we are mostly shy people used to working on our own. If we were outgoing, we would be actors! I will admit that, as a bartender, I am not terribly shy, but that doesn’t mean I’m comfortable with shameless self-promotion. I love talking about my writing. I also hate it. Blogs are fun, pushing my writing in people’s faces is not. This is something we have to get used to, we won’t sell books if we don’t. No promotion=No sales=No money=No food! I like to eat.

Let’s start with the things that I already have in place before the book is written. I have a facebook fanpage. Now that was kind of fun. This morning I counted 120 fans. I have 250 some friends-HINT-HINT! Facebook is fun, but it takes a little longer to build your fans unless you pay for advertising. I’m not in a position to do that just yet. Next was my Twitter page. In less than a month, I have 323 followers! Not too shabby! Twitter definitely grows faster. Yesterday I opened an account at Goodreads. I am still working on that, so I don’t have much to say on that subject just yet. And the most obvious endeavor of the last couple of months-my website here. This website has caused me much anxiety, but it has been a growing experience as well. With the help of my dear friend, Jeana, I think it is looking pretty sharp, but I probably need to spend more time working on it. TIME who the hell has any of THAT!

Okay now, fast forward to Fall when the book is scheduled to be out. Even before you can order it on Amazon or find it in a bookstore, I have to have my platform in place. I am already doing research on which sites might be willing to do reviews, Come On Cemetery Dance! I am also looking into what my budget might be for advertising on the horror sites and in magazines, and which will do it for free. I will be calling the newspaper (always good for free press, especially in smaller towns) and putting together a combination book signing and launch. This is where I will shamelessly invite everyone I know to spend an evening with me and buy a book for me to sign. I will also have to speak publicly. Please excuse me while I go throw up. Since I won’t see any money at all from this book until some time next YEAR, I will have to arrange book signings that don’t cost too much, preferably in bigger cities I can drive to AND where I know someone who will put me up. Fortunately, I have family or friends in Sioux Falls and Rapid City, SD. Minneapolis, Minn. Omaha, Nebraska, and a few other places. I also have family in New York, Denver, and Atlanta to name a few, but plane tickets will be out of the question just now.

I am in contact with a publicist who fortunately offers lesser services for smaller fees. The point I am trying to make is this, if I spend more money than I have, promote myself shamelessly and build a fan-base for things such as this blog, maybe, just maybe, I might sell enough books to break even on the deal. But my next book, that’s where I will start raking in the big bucks! HaHa! That’s all I have for today, I really should start chipping away at all that work I have in the months to come. I’m trying really hard not to let it scare me!

P.S. Just getting this blog done isn’t THE END. I now have to post it 4 places on Facebook, and 1 place on both Twitter and Goodreads! *le sigh* Back into the vault with me!

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